Transuranic (TRU) Waste Repackaging at the Nevada Test Site

PDF Version Also Available for Download.

Description

This paper describes the activities required to modify a facility and the process of characterizing, repackaging, and preparing for shipment the Nevada Test Site’s (NTS) legacy transuranic (TRU) waste in 58 oversize boxes (OSB). The waste, generated at other U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) sites and shipped to the NTS between 1974 and 1990, requires size-reduction for off-site shipment and disposal. The waste processing approach was tailored to reduce the volume of TRU waste by employing decontamination and non-destructive assay. As a result, the low-level waste (LLW) generated by this process was packaged, with minimal size reduction, in large sea-land ... continued below

Creation Information

Sanza, E.F. Di; Pyles, G.; Ciucci, J. & Arnold, P. March 1, 2009.

Context

This article is part of the collection entitled: Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports and was provided by UNT Libraries Government Documents Department to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. More information about this article can be viewed below.

Who

People and organizations associated with either the creation of this article or its content.

Provided By

UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Serving as both a federal and a state depository library, the UNT Libraries Government Documents Department maintains millions of items in a variety of formats. The department is a member of the FDLP Content Partnerships Program and an Affiliated Archive of the National Archives.

Contact Us

What

Descriptive information to help identify this article. Follow the links below to find similar items on the Digital Library.

Description

This paper describes the activities required to modify a facility and the process of characterizing, repackaging, and preparing for shipment the Nevada Test Site’s (NTS) legacy transuranic (TRU) waste in 58 oversize boxes (OSB). The waste, generated at other U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) sites and shipped to the NTS between 1974 and 1990, requires size-reduction for off-site shipment and disposal. The waste processing approach was tailored to reduce the volume of TRU waste by employing decontamination and non-destructive assay. As a result, the low-level waste (LLW) generated by this process was packaged, with minimal size reduction, in large sea-land containers for disposal at the NTS Area 5 Radioactive Waste Management Complex (RWMC). The remaining TRU waste was repackaged and sent to the Idaho National Laboratory Consolidation Site for additional characterization in preparation for disposal at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), near Carlsbad, New Mexico. The DOE National Nuclear Security Administration Nevada Site Office and the NTS Management and Operating (M&O) contractor, NSTec, successfully partnered to modify and upgrade an existing facility, the Visual Examination and Repackaging Building (VERB). The VERB modifications, including a new ventilation system and modified containment structure, required an approved Preliminary Documented Safety Analysis prior to project procurement and construction. Upgrade of the VERB from a radiological facility to a Hazard Category 3 Nuclear Facility required new rigor in the design and construction areas and was executed on an aggressive schedule. The facility Documented Safety Analysis required that OSBs be vented prior to introduction into the VERB. Box venting was safely completed after developing and implementing two types of custom venting systems for the heavy gauge box construction. A remotely operated punching process was used on boxes with wall thickness of up to 3.05 mm (0.120 in) to insert aluminum bronze filters and sample ports to prevent sparking during penetration. A remotely operated cold-drilling process with self-drilling, self-tapping titanium coated spark-resistant filters was used for boxes with wall thickness of up to 6.35 mm (0.25 in). The box headspace was sampled for the presence of flammable gases. To further accelerate the project schedule, an innovative treatment process was used. Several of the OSBs were re-assayed and determined to be mixed low-level waste (MLLW) which allowed treatment, followed by disposal in the Mixed Waste Disposal Unit at the NTS Area 5 Radioactive Waste Management Complex (RWMC). The MLLW boxes were certified using real-time radiography and overpacked into custom-built polyethylene-lined macroencapsulation containers. The polyethylene-lined lid was welded to the poly-lined box using automatically controlled resistance heating through embedded wiring in the lid. The work was performed under the existing Documented Safety Analysis since plastic welding is accomplished at low temperature and does not introduce the risks of other macroencapsulation processes, such as welding stainless steel containers. The macroencapsulation process for MLLW not only accelerated the schedule by reducing the number of boxes requiring size reduction, but it also resulted in significantly improved safety with as low as reasonable achievable levels of exposure to workers plus reduced cost by eliminating the need to perform repackaging in the VERB.

Source

  • Waste Management 2009, Phoenix, Arizona, March 1-5, 2009

Language

Item Type

Identifier

Unique identifying numbers for this article in the Digital Library or other systems.

  • Report No.: DOE/NV--1299
  • Grant Number: NONE
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 962581
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc931488

Collections

This article is part of the following collection of related materials.

Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

What responsibilities do I have when using this article?

When

Dates and time periods associated with this article.

Creation Date

  • March 1, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

Description Last Updated

  • Dec. 2, 2016, 3:59 p.m.

Usage Statistics

When was this article last used?

Yesterday: 0
Past 30 days: 0
Total Uses: 2

Interact With This Article

Here are some suggestions for what to do next.

Start Reading

PDF Version Also Available for Download.

Citations, Rights, Re-Use

Sanza, E.F. Di; Pyles, G.; Ciucci, J. & Arnold, P. Transuranic (TRU) Waste Repackaging at the Nevada Test Site, article, March 1, 2009; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc931488/: accessed May 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.